Today’s News - Wednesday, November 18, 2020
● Stacey McLachlan's (great) dive into how, in the 2010s, universities' design-build programs "were fledgling entries into a new era of hands-on architecture" - today, they give students the "ability to see all of the different ways in which they can contribute to our built world. We can't all be Bjarke Ingels - but, really, how many Bjarkes does the industry even need?"
● Nate Berg delves into how "COVID-19 may accelerate a pattern that turns dull, transit-oriented developments into neighborhoods that resemble bustling cities. But there are risks."
● Rowan Moore uses an "inelegant" and "plasticky" looking new building on London's Charing Cross Road, along with others, as examples of new "buildings whose components seem to have met on a blind date," creating "the rise and rise of ugly buildings" ("a Hieronymus Bosch-type garden of monsters" included).
● Miriam Sitz puts the spotlight on Steven Holl's "luminous" Kinder Building, opening Saturday, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, completing the campus that includes a Mies and a Moneo: "As a literal beacon - the Kinder graciously draws the public in - then encourages them to see the collection, and the city beyond, in a new light."
● Lizzie Crook reports on Shenzhen Horizontal Design's transformation of the ruins of a brick house into the Zhang Yan Cultural Museum "to help revive" the Beijing suburb "and demonstrate how old, rural architecture in China can be reused."
● John King cheers Oakland's "adventurous" new waterfront park that "is a startling remake of a derelict pier" and "a startling act of urban reinvention" (a 9-foot-tall hillock cloaked in lush green grass - a head-scratching apparition") - the initial phase of a 65-acre development that will eventually host housing, including 15% affordable units.
● Kamin cheers "a big, beautiful wall" at Northwestern University that protects "a field house and athletics center from the pounding of Lake Michigan" - it "could have been a monstrosity - instead, it's a curving piece of sculpture," and "anything but an eyesore" (it won an AIA Chicago Design Award as a "divine detail").
● Providence, Rhode Island, announces $17M budget for Kennedy Plaza redesign by Arup "to revitalize its appearance and purpose - to foster community space, pedestrian access, and climate resilience."
● Brussat begs to differ: "The attempt to ruin" Kennedy Plaza, "the central public square of Providence is ongoing. Now -.they are planning to 're-envision' aspects of Waterplace Park, the river walks, the pedestrian tunnels" and more with unneeded "placemaking modifications."
● A round-up of USGBC's new programs and LEED updates + Leadership Awards - "10 extraordinary individuals, companies and projects working to advance healthy, resilient and equitable buildings and communities."
● ICYMI: ANN feature: Artist Gordon Huether: "Amid Social & Economic Uncertainties, Major Public Art Welcomes & Elevates. We are in difficult times, and cost concerns may affect plans for site-specific art. Yet, if there was ever a time that art mattered, when art could unite us, this is that time" (his installations for the Salt Lake City Airport prove it).
● Emporis Skyscraper Awards: Russia's "massive" Lakhta Center in St. Petersburg is named Skyscraper of the Year; Second Place: Hadid's Leeza Soho in Beijing; Third Place: SOM's 35 Hudson Yards + link to remaining 7 runners-up.
● The 18 (very cool!) winners of the Docomomo US 2020 Modernism in America Awards "highlight the best in preservation practice by today's architects, designers, preservation professionals, and grassroots advocates."
● The Copper Development Association and the Canadian Copper & Brass Development Association announce "8 innovative copper building projects in the U.S. and Canada as winners in the 2020 North American Copper in Architecture Awards.
● One of our faves: Winners of Architectural Record's 2020 Cocktail Napkin Sketch Contest - including "the two most amusing submissions."
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Stacey McLachlan: How Can Higher Education Build a Better Architect? In the 2010s, design-build programs were the cutting edge of architectural education...courses were fledgling entries into a new era of hands-on architecture...now, more than ever, we need programs that create citizens, not starchitects, and that treat empathy as reverently as drafting skills...The biggest benefit of...outside-the-classroom courses is the ability for students to see all of the different ways in which they can contribute to our built world. We can’t all be Bjarke Ingels - but, really, how many Bjarkes does the industry even need? -- Iñaki Alday/Tulane School of Architecture UrbanBuild; Dan Rockhill/University of Kansas Studio 804; Harriet Harriss/Pratt School of Architecture; Lesley Lokko; CUNY Spitzer School of Architecture- Dwell
Nate Berg: American suburbs are about to look more like European cities: COVID-19 may accelerate a pattern that turns dull, transit-oriented developments into neighborhoods that resemble bustling cities. But there are risks: Some but not all TODs have sought to create mini districts, with a healthy mix of commercial and residential uses and a heavy emphasis on commuters and people without cars. What got built, though, often fell short...“I think that’s the influence of the 15-minute city"...but it could also create challenges for TODs without affordable housing. -- Robyn Brown/IBI Group; Mariia Zimmerman/MZ Strategies- Fast Company / Co.Design
Rowan Moore: The rise and rise of ugly buildings: An inelegant new neighbour to Foyles bookshop on London’s Charing Cross Road is typical of buildings whose components seem to have met on a blind date. So how do they end up like this? Notwithstanding the fact that [Ilona Rose House] is clad in quite expensive concrete, it looks plasticky...[it] is by no means the worst. (For that you might have to go to the south side of the Thames, to a Hieronymus Bosch-type garden of monsters)...ugly buildings have always been with us...there’s no magic bullet. But it would help if everyone - architects, developers, builders, planners - had a stronger idea of what makes a building good... -- MATT Architecture; SODA; Feilden Clegg Bradley- Observer (UK)
Miriam Sitz: Steven Holl’s Luminous Kinder Building at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston: Home to the only Mies van der Rohe museum in the U.S. [and] a gallery building by...Rafael Moneo, the institution’s...Sarofim Campus is at long last complete...Clad in a vertical array of translucent glass tubes and topped by a complex clerestory roof...glass tubes and the structural cast-in-place-concrete walls...could reduce overall cooling requirements by some 40%...As a literal beacon...[237,213-square-foot] Kinder graciously draws the public into the museum - then encourages them to see the collection, and the city beyond, in a new light. -- Chris McVoy; Deborah Nevins & Associates; Larry Burns/Kendall/Heaton Associates; Guy Nordenson & Associates; Transsolar; L'Observatoire International; Olafur Eliasson; Carlos Cruz-Diez- Architectural Record
Lizzie Crook: Chinese ruins transformed into museum by Shenzhen Horizontal Design: A white-concrete gallery that slots into the ruins of a brick house is among the three exhibition spaces that make up the Zhang Yan Cultural Museum...to help revive the village of Zhang Yan in Shanghai's suburbs and demonstrate how old, rural architecture in China can be reused...the village's original history museum was restored to make the second [of three galleries]- Dezeen
John King: Oakland’s new waterfront park is a startling remake of a derelict pier: Township Commons...a startling act of urban reinvention that...should pull people...to an area that until now has been off the map...Part historic restoration, part sculptural intervention, the 4.5-acre landscape replaces a mostly demolished [1930s] shipping terminal...the initial phase of Brooklyn Basin, a 65-acre development...[park] is an adventurous departure from the norm...preserving the...classically styled concrete facade...Within the remnants of the warehouse...there’s another unexpected sight - a 9-foot-tall hillock cloaked in lush green grass...a head-scratching apparition that pulls you west. -- Liz Einwiller/Sarah Kuehl/EinwillerKuehl; Flynn Architecture; MWA- San Francisco Chronicle
Blair Kamin: Now THAT’S a big, beautiful wall; award-winning lakefront barrier at Northwestern University shows how to upgrade infrastructure: ...protects a...field house and athletics center from the pounding of Lake Michigan. This wall could have been a monstrosity - an ugly, straight-lined barrier of steel or concrete. Instead, it’s a curving piece of sculpture...utilitarian projects can be attuned to human experience as well as environmentally responsive...takes a sinuous route along the shoreline...it curves in both its path and its profile. The result is anything but an eyesore. -- Ralph Johnson/Bryan Schabel,/Perkins and Will; SmithGroup- Chicago Tribune
Providence announces $17M budget for Kennedy Plaza redesign: ...plans to shift a majority of buses out of [the plaza]...to revitalize the space’s appearance and purpose...will include aesthetic and functional improvements...to foster community space, pedestrian access and climate resilience....city and London-based firm Arup Group which is known for designing King’s Crossing in London, are working to create an interactive website portal that will allow the community to offer input...- Providence Business News (Rhode Island)
David Brussat: Kennedy Plaza is still at risk: ... the attempt to ruin the central public square of Providence is ongoing. The plaza’s beauty has diminished greatly since its Art Nouveau waiting kiosks were replaced by sterile modernist ones, but [it] remains an effective main hub for public transit. Not for long, though...Now...they are planning to “re-envision” aspects of Waterplace Park, the river walks, the pedestrian tunnels...and other downtown amenities...Arup...to design this “single cohesive vision...placemaking modifications”...More than anything else, the “vision” sounds like a perfect opportunity to waste taxpayer money on things that aren’t needed.- Architecture Here and There
USGBC Readies the Green Building Industry for a LEED Positive Future During Greenbuild: New programs and LEED updates bring focus to social equity and health while pushing buildings to commit to net zero and preparing for a shift to regenerative strategies: USGBC All In new equity program; Living Standard campaign expnded; Return on Investment (ROI) Study; LEED Zero for Design rating system; Leadership Awards - 10 extraordinary individuals, companies and projects working to advance healthy, resilient and equitable buildings and communities.- U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
New Atlas: Russia's massive Lakhta Center [St. Petersburg] named skyscraper of the year [Emporis Skyscraper Award]: From over 700 skyscrapers...completed in 2019...designed by Gorproject and RMJM, is Europe's tallest building and the 13th-tallest worldwide...Second place, Zaha Hadid Architects' Leeza Soho [Beijing, China] is one of the firm's finest works to date...Third place goes to New York City's 35 Hudson Yards, by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) + link to remaining 7 runners-up- New Atlas (formerly Gizmag)
Winners of the Docomomo US 2020 Modernism in America Awards: 18 projects highlight the best in preservation practice by today’s architects, designers, preservation professionals, and grassroots advocates.- DOCOMOMO US
The Copper Development Association (CDA) has just announced 8 innovative copper building projects in the United States and Canada as winners in the 2020 North American Copper in Architecture (NACIA) Awards. With a newfound consideration for healthy design in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, designers are turning to the timeless metal for its sustainable and antimicrobial properties. -- Samuel Anderson Architects; Archimania; Brandes Maselli Architects; A&E Architects/Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates; OMNIPLAN Architects/Berenbaum, Jacobs & Associates; Barry J. Hobin & Associates; Danielle Hannah/Sharanne Paquette; EVOQ Architecture- Copper Development Association/Canadian Copper & Brass Development Association
2020 Cocktail Napkin Sketch Contest Winners: Now in its 10th year, Architectural Record’s annual [contest] showcases the passion and skill of a diverse group of architects, designers, and students. RECORD editors selected the winning sketches, as well as five runners-up and the two most amusing submissions. -- Phil Pokorny Architecture; Kyoko Iwasaka Architects; Gregory Klosowski/Pappageorge Haymes Partners; Michael Pope/Modus Studio; Geoff Parker/Mass Architects; Jaime Ycaza/Ycaza Group; Samuel Ringman/Ringman Design + Illustration; Tony Costello/Costello & Associates- Architectural Record
ANN feature: Gordon Huether: Amid Social & Economic Uncertainties, Major Public Art Welcomes & Elevates: Tripling value of 1% for Art: We are in difficult times, and cost concerns may affect plans for site-specific art. Yet, if there was ever a time that art mattered, when art could unite us in inspiration, nature, and beauty, this is that time.- ArchNewsNow.com
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